Editors' note: Here are the exhibitions we've listed over the past few years.
The Animal Gaze Returned
London Metropolitan University 27 October - 11 November 2011
The Animal Gaze Returned addresses contemporary art and animals. The focus of the exhibition is on animality and the active social space between and among different species; on new representations of other animals in what is termed a post-critical era; and on animal as medium in contemporary art.
The artists include Greta Alfaro, Steve Baker, Jacob Cartwright & Nick Jordan, Aurelia Mihai and Snaebjornsdottir/Wilson.
The exhibition is in two locations: Cass Gallery - Central House, 59-63 Whitechapel High Street, London E1 7PF; and Cass Gallery - Commercial Road, 41 Commercial Road, London E1 1LA.
BEE BOX Anne Brody Bishop's Square, Spitalfields Brushfield Street, London, E1 6AA 1 September - 1 November 2011
The first public art exhibition held simultaneously across eight countries in Europe focuses on relations between art, science and society. As the UK representative, Anne Brodie, presents her artwork, BEE BOX, for the first time.
The BEE BOX reminds us of the invisible disappearance of our
pollinators. Bees, like us, form communities of workers capable of generating intelligent social interactions. Brodie offers a poetic reflection on the fragility of these communities.
The project is organised by the European Public Art Centre (EPAC), a collaborative engagement between organisations across Europe with the aim to exhibit art-science artworks in urban outdoor public settings. The other countries are Latvia, Finland, Portugal, Spain, Iceland, Estonia and Poland.
In 2006/07 Anne was awarded an Antarctic international fellowship sponsored by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and Arts Council England, and spent 3 months working in the Antarctic. She continues her creative investigation on the human/environmental interface with scientists at BAS and the University of Surrey.
Manchester, Brighton, Cardiff, Edinburgh
6 April - 30 September
Tarnished Earth is a street exhibition of photographs by Jiri Rezac showing North American wilderness, the environmental consequences of human actions, and sources for alternative forms of energy. The photographs tell the story of the Canadian tar sands oil extraction.
H2O Chelsea Futurespace Hepworth Court, Grosvenor Waterside
Gatliff Road, London SW1W 8QP
19 July - 2 October
A group show on the theme of water, H2O features the artists:
Ekkehard Altenburger, Crispin Chetwynd, Keith Collins, Richard Elliott, Stephen Farthing, David Ferry, Derek Jarman, Robin Jenkins, Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands, Doug Kuntz, Shoko Maeda, Oborn & Reekie, Tim O'Riley, Emily Rubner, Donald Smith.
In the Event of Flooding Elizabeth Willow High Tide libraries on Merseyside 1 - 30 June
During a High Tide residency at FACT in Liverpool in 2009, Elizabeth Willow gathered 90 responses from visitors to the 'Climate for Change' exhibition. The responses are presented as a set of four books.
The books are exhibited at the Allerton, Lea Valley and Wavertree libraries in
Liverpool and the Bebington, Birkenhead Central, Wallasey and West Kirby libraries on the Wirral
ECO-ART Pori Art Museum, Pori, Finland 4 February - 29 May 2011
ECO-ART is a group show of contemporary artists working in the fields of environmental and ecological art. Included are works by:
Jan-Erik Andersson, Brandon Ballengée, Ciel Bergman, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Joyce Cutler-Shaw, Agnes Denes, Chris Drury, Michael Flomen, Andy Goldsworthy, Helen and Newton Harrison, Ichi Ikeda, Richard Misrach, Nils-Udo, Dennis Oppenheim, Robert Smithson, Alan Sonfist.
Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller Cubitt Gallery 8 Angel Mews, London, N1 9HH 16 April - 29 May 2011
Cubitt Gallery presents Spaghetti Junctions, the first UK solo exhibition by Swiss artists Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller. Through video, sculptural-recreation, text and archive material the artists explore two short-lived experiments with solar energy, both marking points of change or crisis in the history of oil consumption.
Sun of 1913 (2009) looks back to the first commercial-scale solar power plant, built in 1913, in Egypt under British mandate, by American engineer Frank Shuman. For a short period solar was the most economical form of power generation, cheaper than shipping coal from Britain. However, the plant ceased operation after one year, when at the onset of World War I the British Government began mass-scale crude oil production in Iran, precipitating a widespread turn to oil. The fate of Shuman’s solar plant is told through a narrative written with Egyptian writer Wageh George. A video projection shows two segments of the plant being reconstructed in Cairo by the artists and craftsmen.
A Curiosity, a Museum Piece and an Example of a Road not Taken (2006-2007) investigates former American president Jimmy Carter’s pioneering but ultimately futile energy programme. It culminated in his symbolic solar installation on the White House roof during the 1979 energy crisis, which was removed by the Ronald Regan administration.
At Water's Edge Environmental Photographer of the Year 2009 - 2010 EDGEspace, Liverpool
22 February - 19 March 2011
The Environmental Photographer of the Year is an international showcase for the best in environmental photography. At Water's Edge is an exclusive exhibition of images selected from the 2009 and 2010 Environmental Photographer of the Year submissions.
EDGEspace, High Tide's new venue for eco-culture in the North West of England, opened on 21 January 2011. It promotes Experimental Dialogues for Generating Eco-culture. Located in the Ropewalks district of Liverpool city centre, EDGEspace aims to be a hub of creative activity around ethical, environmental and ecological issues.
photo: Changing Climates: Solar Energy Versus Fossil Fuel by Dave Walsh/Greenpeace
Dominion Peninsula Arts, University of Plymouth, Devon 22 January - 5 March 2011
Drawing on the overarching symbol of the whale, Dominion is a multilayered and allusive attempt to come to terms with a shared history between human and whale. It incorporates Angela Cockayne’s chimerical objects and Philip Hoare’s text. The result is an aesthetic sermon on the state of the whale and the world.
A Memorial for the Still Living
Beatriz da Costa
Horniman Museum & Gardens, London 2 October 2010 to 9 January 2011
Beatriz da Costa presents A Memorial for the Still Living, a sombre reflection on endangered species in an installation which confronts visitors with the reality of British species threatened with extinction. Da Costa’s focus is on the ‘still living’: species that have been classified as being under threat, but which still stand a chance for survival if immediate action is taken.
Artist's talk: 25 November 2010 from 7:00 - 9:30 pm
Beatriz da Costa discusses the inspiration and processes involved in creating A Memorial for the Still Living and leads a tour of the exhibition.
To coincide with the exhibition, da Costa has released the Endangered Species Finder, a mobile application that helps you to locate, identify, and submit sightings of endangered species in the UK.
Behind the Dawn Moray Art Centre, Findhorn, Scotland 6 November - 11 December 2010
Behind the Dawn is an exhibition accompanied by events, performances and workshops celebrating the International Year of Biodiversity.
Evaporation, by Jana Winderen – film and sound environment recordings 25 metres under the ice of Greenland and inside the ice itself
Cell biology microscopy, x-ray chrystalography and scanning electron microscopy photography by The University of Edinburgh
Midwinter, Close Reflection, Water Wind and Light - films by James Hawkins
Paintings Inspired By Nature – an aesthetic interpretation of a microscopic world by Hamer Dodds, scientist
Lucy + Jorge Orta Natural History Museum
6 October - 12 December 2010
Artists Lucy + Jorge Orta joined the Cape Farewell expedition to the Peruvian Amazon rainforest in July 2009. Working closely with the Manú Biosphere Reserve in Peru, with scientists from the Environmental Change Institute, Oxford, and with the Natural History Museum's collections, the artists developed Amazonia, an exhibition of sculpture, photography and video for the Jerwood Gallery.
The exhibition includes:
Madre de Dios - Fluvial Intervention Unit: a 5m-long pirogue (flat-bottomed) boat sculpture with hundreds of tiny creatures.
Perpetual Amazonia: an interactive installation featuring thousands of plant and flower images each representing a designated area of the rainforest's Manú Biosphere Reserve.
Bone Variations: large-scale aluminium sculptures modelled on fossil dinosaur bones from the Museum's collections.
Amazon Florae: sculpted, hand-crafted flowers inspired by expedition photographs.
Amazonia: 2-screen video projection with images and sounds from the expedition, accompanied by a poem narrated by eco poet Mario Petrucci.
7 South Street, Leominster, HR6 8JA
22 October - 27 November 2010
Curated by Sally Payen, Next Nature is part of iNTERTEXT’s program of international artists’ installations that began with Uncivilisation at The Dark Mountain Project Festival in Llangollen in May this year.
This exhibition explores the duality between the idealised nature we dream about and the changing nature brought about by humankind’s interference, the rising of a next nature, which is wild and unpredictable as ever. .
Artists in the exhibition include Cyriak, Jaime Jackson, James Winnett, Paul Evans, Morag Colquhoun and Susan Bowman
The exhibition is open during the Hereford Photography Festival. The will be a Climate Change seminar on 25 November at the Festival, chaired by Stephen Snoddy, Director of New Art Gallery.
photo: still from video 'Moving' by Susan Bowman
Editors' note: see our blogs on the Uncivilisation event and the Dark Mountain Project here and here.
Radar at Loughborough University May - November 2010
Building Green explores issues around sustainability and food production and consists of three new commissions by major artists, Amy Franceschini / Myriel Milicevic (Futurefarmers), Rebecca Beinart and Nils Norman.
These artists / provocateurs use their work to channel concerns about the need to sustain a global ecological balance using seemingly commonplace processes such as gardening, building and food production.
Each Artist is using the environment of Loughborough University as the platform for their work. FutureFarmers are cultivating a plot of land. Beinart is finding and using natural yeasts that exist around the campus and town, and Norman is creating a permanent structure from recycled materials.
All three pieces will develop over the summer and come to fruition in October 2010.
Hydrarchy: Power and Resistance at Sea Gasworks, London 18 September - 7 November 2010
Hydrarchy: Power and Resistance at Sea is a group exhibition that approaches historical and contemporary examinations of the sea and the offshore as contested cultural, political, legal and socio-economic territories. Focusing on specific events, situations and mythologies attached to past and recent maritime history, the works address power relations at sea and the forms of resistance and survival developed as a response.
The exhibition brings together artists whose work explores themes encompassing colonialism and the slave trade, commerce, sea tourism and offshore finance, as well as maritime folk history, piracy and the proverbially tyrannical figure of the captain. While not always explicitly referenced in the works, the ship, as the ultimate container and enabler of these activities, histories and relations, stands as the unifying element of the exhibition.
The artists are: Mathieu K. Abonnenc, Goldin+Senneby, Laura Horelli, Melanie Jackson, Anja Kirschner and David Panos, Paul McCarthy, Uriel Orlow, Femmy Otten, Christodoulos Panayiotou, João Pedro Vale.
Photo: Anja Kirschner and David Panos, Polly II: Plan for a Revolution in Docklands (2006), 30', video still.
Ambulation Plymouth Arts Centre, Plymouth 14 August - 10 October 2010
Ambulation is an exhibition, series of events, films and new commissions by artists and architects who use walking as an artistic practice.
The series of newly commissioned tours explore the city of Plymouth through its histories; and unseen, distinctive anomalies. The intention of Ambulation is that the exhibition of ephemera, commissions and documentation along with the projects will help to develop a conversation on walking and the city over the period of the exhibition.
The artists are ad:HOC, Bridgette Ashton, Tim Brennan, Simon Persighetti and Tony Whitehead, Phil Smith and Polly Macpherson, and the Architecture Centre Devon and Cornwall.
Plymouth Arts Centre 38 Looe street Plymouth, PL4 0EB
In collaboration with the people of Igloolik, Kinngait, Iqaluit, Mittimatalik and Kanngiqtugaapik in Nunavut, Canada, artists and architects are devising a mobile media and living unit, powered by renewable energy sources, to be used by Inuit and other Arctic peoples for creative media production, communications and monitoring the environment, while moving, living and working on the land.
The Arctic Perspective Initiative is an international collaborative partnership between Projekt Atol, C-TASC, HMKV, The Arts Catalyst and Lorna. It is led by artists Marko Peljhan and Matthew Biederman. The exhibition at Canada House is curated by The Arts Catalyst.
The exhibition at the Phoenix Halle, Dortmund, Germany, is curated by HMKV in the framework of European Capital of Culture RUHR 2010 and the international media-art conference ISEA 2010.
Joseph Beuys/ARTIST ROOMS Glasgow International Festival of Visual Arts and Hunterian Art Gallery Glasow 1 April - 27 September 2010
Andy Warhol portrait of Joseph Beuys, 1980
This ARTIST ROOMS exhibition contains a selection of the work of Joseph Beuys (1921 - 1986), one of the most influential figures in post-war European Art.
The exhibition includes a number of vitrines, including the legendary 'Fat Chair', a selection of drawings and an iconic portrait of Beuys by Andy Warhol.
ARTIST ROOMS is a new collection of international contemporary art created through a gift made by Anthony d’Offay, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF), The Art Fund and the Scottish and British Governments. ARTIST ROOMS is jointly owned and managed by National Galleries of Scotland and Tate on behalf of the nation.
The principle of ARTIST ROOMS is the concept of individual rooms devoted to particular artists.
a moved wind exhibition
near Hesse, Germany
15 - 29 August 2010
This year's exhibition by bewegter-wind (moved wind) is on the theme of 'Turbulence', and will be held on locations around Hesse Germany.
Artists working with wind objects, installations, performances and landart have been selected from a competition.
From the exhibition organisers:
Turbulences are meetings of unordered currents. A dynamic turbulence is the swirling of a current in the meteorological and in the metaphorical sense. They stand for fast changing situations. This is also a metaphor for the aspects of the communication of winds in the the world. Turbulences can be both: a threat and a chance, upswing or crash.
moved wind have, since 2004, held annual exhibitions of wind art.
'Wind is the only element, which is not visible and is only noticed through the relationship with the other elements. It is a phenomenon and a symbol for spirit. Each landscape is shaped by it, each culture is affected by it. Its play with high and low pressure is a metaphor for communication in the back and forth of the winds of the world. These various aspects of an invisible phenomenon occupies artists world-wide'
A Horse walks into a Bar Castlefield Gallery, Manchester 18 June - 8 Aug 2010
This group exhibition examines the parameters of human and animal characteristics and question the evolution of the human race.
Some of the work blurs the boundaries between nostalgia and abhorrence, referencing the use of animals in the entertainment industry, whilst other work references animals in heraldic, mythological stories. Conventions in visual art practice are also deliberated, highlighting the inter-dependence of living beings in a contemporary world, these range from the allegorical use of animals in traditional regal portraiture to other works that alter our perception of sculpture by fusing animal imagery with mass produced objects.
The exhibition can be seen as reflective of our increasingly uneasy relationship with the natural world that is tainted with confusion, contradiction and confrontation and will oscillate between the playful, sinister, surreal and controversial.
The artists included are: Corey Arnold, Richard Billingham, Andrew Bracey, Lorraine Burrell, Maddi Nicholson, Dan Staincliffe, Chiz Turnross, UHC and Mark Wallinger.
Uneven Geographies: Art and Globalisation
8 May - 4 July 2010
A group exhibition, Uneven Geographies brings together artists who aim to represent the fabric of lives affected by global flows, rather than capturing the instant, sensational journalistic image. Whether using film, installation or sculpture, or experimenting with maps, flow-charts and diagrams, all aim to make the networks of power, profit and exploitation very visible.
The artists included are:
Éduardo Abaroa, Azzellini & Ressler, Yto Barrada, Ursula Biemann, Bureau d’Études, Öyvind Fahlström, Goldin + Senneby, Mark Lombardi, Steve McQueen, Cildo Meireles, George Osodi, Bruno Serralongue, Mladen Stilinovic, Yang Zhenzhong.
The exhibition is curated by T.J Demos and Alex Farquharson.
Stuart Whipps - New Wooabbeleri
Focal Point Gallery, Southend Central Library 17 May - 3 July 2010
New Wooabbeleri is an analysis of how the local conurbation of Thamesmead received its name, and by implication, how large developments sometimes rely on chance and spurious encounters, as much as clearly defined parameters and plans.
Stuart Whipps became interested in the history of Thamesmead after investigating its uncertain origins. Known in its early days as 'The Woolwich-Erith Riverside Project', it needed a clearly identifiable moniker, so a 'name the new town' competition was launched in November 1966. In all, there were 565 entries and 'Thamesmead' was finally chosen in March 1967.
The site which remains the largest geographical location designated for regeneration in Europe. The project aims to address how sometimes random and indiscriminate historical facts can affect the imagination of local communities. It suggests that, if certain plans are always open to interpretation, then perhaps it's responsible for each of us to try and take control of how our environment is shaped, and be actively involved in injecting our surroundings with meaning and potential for the future.
Ed Kashi photographs
HOST Gallery, 1-5 Honduras Street, London EC1
8 March – 3 April 2010
Ed Kashi is known worldwide for his outstanding photojournalism and his commitment to documenting social and political issues. The exhibition of his work in the Niger Delta presents photographs included in the newly published Curse of the Black Gold.
Related events are:
Ed Kashi in discussion with Colin Jacobson HOST Gallery 8 March, 6.30pm
'In the Picture' Ed Kashi at the Frontline Club 10 March, 6pm.
As part of Shaping the Future, a PLATFORM residency at the Stephen Lawrence Centre, Ed Kashi will be running a hands-on workshop on the ‘photo-essay’ for young people. For more information on this, email Ben Amunwa at Remember Saro-Wiwa.
Marcus Coates Milton Keynes Gallery Milton Keynes
15 January - 4 April 2010
This exhibition is the first survey of Marcus Coates’ work in a public gallery in the UK and it includes early film pieces, sculpture, sound, costumes and photographs as well as new work.
Coates often assumes the identity of an animal, such as a fox, goshawk or stoat, by simulating its appearance, enacting its habits and appropriating its language. In the film, Stoat (1999), for example, Coates totters around on ramshackle platforms, learning to recreate the animals’ bounding movements; in Goshawk (1999), a telephoto lens captures the artist as a rare bird perched precariously at the top of a tree; while in Finfolk (2003), the artist emerges from the North Sea spluttering a new dialect, as spoken by seals.
Coates has also trained as a shaman and the exhibition includes films of his rituals, where he achieves a trance-like state and communes with the animal kingdom to address social issues. photograph: Marcus Coates, Vision quest, Ernie, 2009, by Nick David
Presented as part of the International Year of Biodiversity, the show presents the outcome of the artist’s study of deformed amphibians in the UK, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst and Yorkshire Sculpture Park.
RETHINK - Contemporary Art & Climate Change Copenhagen, Denmark 31 October 2009 - 5 April 2010
Tomas Saraceno, Observatory/Air-Port-City, 2008
The National Gallery of Denmark, Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art, Nikolaj Copenhagen Contemporary Art Center, and the Alexandra Institute join together in RETHINK - Contemporary Art and Climate Change an international contemporary art exhibition showing diverse perspective on the climate debate.
The exhibition, part of the official culture programme for the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP15, includes artists whose work relates to the intersection between art, culture and climate change.
The four exhibitions are:
The RETHINK website includes essays and blogs on rethinking politics, nature, art, social life, technology and borders.
National Gallery of Denmark 31 October 2009 - 5 April 2010
RETHINK Relations bids the audience to reconsider our social relations and how we live. Featured artists: Tomas Saraceno (AR), Olafur Eliasson (IS/DK), Henrik Håkansson (SE), Allora & Calzadilla (US/CU)
RETHINK The Implicit
Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art 31 October - 27 December 2009
RETHINK The Implicit brings to light the aspects of climate changes we take for granted or overlook.
Featured artists: Elin Hansdottir (IS), Thilo Frank (DE), Henrik Håkansson (SE), Bright Ugochukwu Eke (NG), Kerstin Ergenzinger (DE), Tove Storck (DK)
Nikolaj Contemporary Art Center 31 October 2009 - 10 January 2010
RETHINK Kakotopia considers the possibility of a future with catastrophic climate changes.
Featured artists: Lise Autogena (DK) and Joshua Portway (UK), Bill Burns (CA), The Icelandic Love Corporation (IS), Eric Andersen (DK), Superflex (DK), Tea Mäkipää (FI), Haubitz + Zoche (DE), Tue Greenfort (DK), Cornelia Parker (UK), Ruri (IS), Superflex (DK), Fiona Tan (ID/NL)
Earth Art of a Changing World Royal Academy of Arts and GSK Contemporary 3 December 2009 - 31 January 2010
A collaboration between the Royal Academy of Art and GSK Contemporary 2009 (sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline), Earth Art of a Changing World sets out to consider the impact of climate change on the practice of a broad range of contemporary artists, working in a wide-variety of media. Some of the artists featured are involved in the issue directly. For others, it has an indirect resonance with their work.
The sections of the exhibition are:
An introduction to the key factors that make up the natural world our cultural relationship to earth’s stability, the section includes Works by Ackroyd & Harvey, Spencer Finch, Mona Hatoum and Marcos Lutyens & Alessandro Marianantoni.
Showing representations of the world as we imagine it today, the section includes works by Antti Laitinen and Edward Burtynsky.
Artist as Explorer and Reflector
At the centre of the exhibition, this section is about the role of the artist as communicator, reflector and interpreter of key issues of their day. The artists include Sophie Calle, Lucy & Jorge Orta, Cornelia Parker, the poet Lemn Sissay and Shiro Takatani.
This section will consider the consequences of human behaviour through natural disasters and physical collapse, counterpoising the beauty of the planet with the damage that is being inflicted upon it.
The New (Reality)
This section shows how the world and the sense of beauty is being re-defined by the impact of climate change.
This change has fostered new notions of care and empathy for habitats, for bio-diversity and a new sense of a shared emotional understanding. Artists include the writer, Ian McEwan, Mariele Neudecker and Emma Wieslander.
Arts Catalyst Office of Experiments, Steve Rowell, Beatriz da Costa, Victoria Halford and Steve Beard John Hansard Gallery, University of Southampton 24 November 2009 - 23 January 2010
Menwith Hill, North Yorkshire, for Ultimate High Ground. Photo: Steve Rowell
Dark Places uncovers sites of secrecy and technology across Britain. Commissioned by The Arts Catalyst and co-curated with the Office of Experiments, SCAN and the John Hansard Gallery, the exhibition presents new artists' works that explore spaces and institutions below the radar of common knowledge.
The Office of Experiments' (OOE) Overt Research Project sets a background by mapping and recording advanced labs and facilities that are unwittingly or purposefully concealed from public view. OOE also brings together The Mike Kenner Archive, revealing years of campaigning by one man into the public biochemical warfare experiments conducted by Porton Down (Salisbury).
Victoria Halford and Steve Beard's film Voodoo Science Park traces a secret geography of the Health and Safety Laboratory in Derbyshire, where train crashes and industrial accidents are re-created to examine their destructive pathways. The film imagines a delayed encounter between poet William Blake and political philosopher Thomas Hobbes, drawing affinities to this unique site.
Beatriz da Costa's A Memorial for the Still Living is a sombre reflection on endangered species of the British Isles. Presenting a selection of rare animal, insect and reptile specimens, including loans from the Natural History and Horniman Museums, da Costa identifies these collections and the bleak future they imply as 'dark places' of zoological science.
Steve Rowell, a collaborator with the US-based group the Center for Land Use Interpretation (CLUI), in his solo project Ultimate High Ground UK, uncovers shared US-UK spaces of military power. Realised as a multiscreen video installation, the work focuses upon RAF Menwith Hill, North Yorkshire, a satellite ground station and
communications intercept site, known for its distinctive radome structures.
Beth Derbyshire with Ulrike Haage
opening performance: 14 November - 9 December 2009 Mediterranean Biome at the Eden Project, Cornwall
The Eden Project and Cape Farewell present the premiere of Beth Derbyshire's film work, Anthem, with music by composer Ulrike Haage. Anthem is a trilogy of films with a choral component, exploring notions of land, place and nation.
Anthem assembles ideas around nationality, identity and language using the symbols of landscape and song to explore our cultural relationship to landscape. Song and landscape have long been associated with expressions on nation. Derbyshire borrows from sources such as national anthems, ancient land names and etymology to capture cultural and natural settings, to explore the connections between people and landscape through balancing components of voice, music, word and image.
Anthem was filmed in Newfoundland, the UK and in the Arctic during the Cape Farewell research expedition of 2007.
by Omer Fast
South London Gallery
7 October - 6 December 2009
Judgement Day struck in 1980 and the world has been mired in a second Dark Ages since. Northern Europe is a wasteland and Britain has become a barren backwater where nomadic tribes roam across the dunes and raid one another for depleted resources. The only steady export from this once fabled island are migrants, who desperately stream across the European mainland in hope of a more peaceful and prosperous future in Africa.
The South London Gallery presents 'Nostalgia', a three-part film installation by Omer Fast. One film depicts a migrant from a dystopian Britain seeking asylum in Africa. Adapted from a true story, this narrative is presented alongside an extract of original footage and a dramatisation of an encounter between the artist and a person seeking asylum in Britain. In a third story, in a west African colony increasingly hostile to Britons seeking a better life, an asylum-seeker is interrogated as to the whereabouts of a tunnel used to smuggle people into the colony. He is offered a deal by the authorities and must choose between betraying his friends and securing his future.
Fast's film and video work, often shown as installations on multiple screens, takes contemporary issues or historic moments as their points of departure, meshing narrative, documentary and dramatic content.
'Nostalgia' is co-produced by the South London Gallery; the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive; and the Verein der Freunde der Nationalgalerie, Berlin.
Gustav Metzger: Decades 1959–2009 Serpentine Gallery, London
This major exhibition of work by the influential artist and activist Gustav Metzger, examines his life-long exploration of politics, ecology and the destructive powers of 20th-century society. Metzger’s career has spanned over 60 years and this is the most extensive survey of his work to be shown in the UK.
The exhibition draws together the themes and methodologies that have informed the London-based artist’s practice from 1959 until the present day. The broad cross-section of works on view include Metzger’s auto-destructive and auto-creative works of the 1960s, such as his pioneering liquid crystal projections; the ongoing Historic Photographs series, which responds to major events and catastrophes; and later works exploring ecological issues, globalisation and commercialisation.
Film footage of seminal performances and actions are exhibited, as well as a new, participative installation using the archive of newspapers Metzger has been collecting since 1995.
Lucy Orta Plymouth Arts Centre and Plymouth College of Arts
The exhibition and series of workshops by Lucy Orta
examines the social bonds within communities and the relationships between individuals and their environments.
The exhibition brings together sculptures, videos, objects, drawings and photographs created by Orta over the last ten years. Orta’s work reflects on themes including community and social inclusion; dwellings and mobility; and recycling and sustainable development. Conceptual in her approach, she is also innovative and experimental, creating modular and transformable objects such as wearable shelters, survival kits, giant dinner parties and mobile kitchens that are both functional and utopian.
Radical Nature: Art and Architecture for a Changing Planet 1969–2009
Barbican Art Gallery, London 19 June - 18 October 2009
Radical Nature is the first exhibition to bring together key figures across different generations who have created utopian works and inspiring solutions for our ever-changing planet.
Radical Nature draws on ideas that have emerged out of Land Art, environmental activism, experimental architecture and utopianism. The exhibition is designed as one fantastical landscape, with each piece introducing into the gallery space a dramatic portion of nature.
Work by pioneering figures such as the architectural collective Ant Farm and visionary architect Richard Buckminster Fuller, artists Joseph Beuys, Agnes Denes, Hans Haacke and Robert Smithson are shown alongside pieces by a younger generation of practitioners including Heather and Ivan Morison, R&Sie(n), Philippe Rahm architects and Simon Starling.
Radical Nature also features specially commissioned and restaged historical installations, some of which are located in the outdoor spaces around the Barbican while a satellite project by the architectural collective EXYZT is situated off site.
Arts Catalyst, with Nicolas Primat, Antony Hall, Kira O'Reilly, Ruth Maclennan, Beatriz da Costa, Rachel Mayeri
1 - 4 October 2009
A Foundation's Rochelle School, Shoreditch, London, UK
Interspecies uses artistic strategies to stimulate dialogue about the way we view the relationship between human and non-human animals. All the artists in Interspecies question the one-sided manipulation of non-human life forms for art. They try instead to absorb the animal's point of view as a fundamental part of their work and practice.
There have been many examples in history of 'living art', where artists have manipulated the actions of swarms of bees, herded sheep, commanded dogs and sent rats down mazes. But can artists work with animals as equals? What does this mean to how we humans see ourselves as just one species inhabiting a planet in crisis?
The family day, Sunday 4 October, will give people a chance to see artists in contact with animals. Performance artist Kira O'Reilly will be Falling asleep with a pig, called Deliah, and Antony Hall's Enki Experiment 4 will invite visitors to communicate with an electric fish. During the afternoon, parents and children can take part in a series of free events:
Becoming Bowerbirds Children and parents are invited to be a bowerbird for the afternoon with artist Sally Hampson. Interspecies Tales Poet and storyteller Shamim Azad uses aspects of the Asian folk and oral traditions, with chant and body movement, poems, percussion instruments, tabla and songs. Animal Handler’s Tales Broadcaster and trainer of the owls used in the first Harry Potter movie, James Mackay talks about his work as 'The Animal Man' with exhibition curator Rob La Frenais.
The exhibition was first shown at the Cornerhouse, Manchester.
It included artworks that made visible and tangible the outcomes of our actions at a local level, artworks conceived as social interventions, and artworks which arise out of a sustained dialogue between artists and scientists.
Artists and exhibits include:
Heather Ackroyd and Dan Harvey Beuys' Oaks an installation of 250 oak saplings, exploring the legacy of Joseph Beuys and his seminal artwork 7000 Oaks
Amy Balkin Reading the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
A public recital by volumteers and artists of the most recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Prayas Abhinav Petpuja A project on urban food systems in Bangalore and Delhi, exploring the nutritive, environmental and inter-personal implications that growing vegetables in the public can have on neighbourhoods.
Eva Meyer-Keller Handmade A film in which three different catastrophic weather scenarios are re-enacted with playful precision using household objects and materials such as a mixer, a hairdryer, salt and water.
Climate for Change FACT Gallery, Liverpool 13 March - 31 May 2009
With Climate for Change, FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) explored how humans can be invested in the change needed to sustain civilization and is examining the multiple crises affecting the world: ecological, financial, food, housing. Is society itself becoming unsustainable?
From FACT's website:
'The 21st century has finally hit and there is an energy in the air - how do you respond? Forget the eco-art and bring on local, national and international debates, actions, contexts, struggles and solutions'.
The Animal Gaze
Plymouth: Plymouth College of Art, Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, Roland Levinsky Gallery Exeter: Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World (CCANW) 24 January - May 2009
Kate James, The World is a Dangerous Place
The Animal Gaze explored the complex relationships between animals and humans. The exhibition featured over 40 national and international artists whose works showed new approaches to animals, taking into account ethics, politics and aesthetics.
CCANW Animal Gaze film evening CCANW showed a special selection of short films and animations by 15 artists involved in the exhibition on 5 March. Artists featured included Roz Mortimer, Paul Bush, Suky Best and Tessa Farmer.
The Animal Gaze exhibition was a London Metropolitan University event and is curated by Rosemarie McGoldrick. The artists include Suky Best, Roz Cran, Matilda Downs, Tessa Farmer, Hayden Fowler, Aurelia Mihai, Nicola Oxley, Andrea Roe, Claire Rousell, Clara S Rueprich, Helen Sears and Miranda Whall.
24 January - 29 March 2009
Nicolas Primat, INTERSPECIES
The Arts Catalyst exhibition, Interspecies: artists collaborating with animals consisted of new commissions and existing works by artists working closely with different species of animals, stimulated by the anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth.
All the artists questioned the one-sided manipulation of non-human life forms for art. They tried to absorb the animal's point of view as a fundamental part of their work and practice.
The newly commissioned works are by Nicolas Primat, Kira O'Reilly, Antony Hall and Ruth Maclennan. The other pieces are by Rachel Mayeri, Beatriz Da Costa and Kathy High.
Kira O'Reilly presented an action/installed performance featuring herself and a sleeping female pig. The work addressed the ethics of human and non-human animal interaction.
Antony Hall encouraged the public to directly communicate with live electric fish in the gallery space, through mild electrical impulses both tactile and visual.
Ruth Maclennan's 'The Department of Eagles' examined the relationship between falcons and falconers, and its association with human surveillance.
Two existing works were also shown in the touring exhibition: Rachel Mayeri's 'Primate Cinema', which casts human actors in the role of mating non-human primates; and Beatriz Da Costa's 'PigeonBlog' which investigates the military use of homing pigeons.
The exhibition opens at the Cornerhouse, Manchester, and will tour to Edinburgh, Northumberland and London.
The exhibition included works by Ursula Bieman, Olafur Eliasson, Douglas Gordon, Tue Greenfort, Christina Hemauer und Roman Keller, Jonathan Horowitz, Horse Art, Christoph Keller, Leopold Kessler, Deborah Ligorio, Elke Marhöfer, Gordon Matta-Clark, Gustav Metzger, Anna Meyer, Olaf Nicolai, Dan Peterman, Marjetica Potrè, Philippe Rahm, Santiago Sierra, Rirkrit Tiranvanija, Marie Velardi, Christine Würmell.
The works in the exhibition considered the consequences of human actions; addressing, documenting and reflecting about climatic phenomena, as well as offering strategies and potential solutions including ideas for recycling and setting up closed systems.
In the film, a life-size replica of the interior of a McDonalds burger bar, without any customers or staff present, gradually floods with water. Furniture is lifted up by the water, trays of food and drinks start to float around, electrics short circuit and eventually the space becomes completely submerged.
This is the first solo exhibition by Superflex in in London. Over the past 15 years, Superflex's work has included large-scale installations, long-term process-based projects and, more recently, films.
Alan Warburton - the Fruits of Conversation The Shop, Cambridge
8 - 20 December 2008
The Fruits of Conversation was a community collaboration in which residents of Cambridge worked together to dissect local issues - using apples. In the spirit of his project Cutting the Melon, which documented how ordinary Venezuelans used melons to explain politics, Alan Warburton and his team asked Cambridge residents to do the same with local apples.
After a trip to an orchard to collect apples, the group (which included university geneticists, a food historian, community workers, civil servants and a police officer) were asked to cut, core and peel their apples to explain their opinions on a range of political topics.
The conversations were documented in detail by the artist, and the resulting exhibition displays video and photographic evidence of the process. The subject matter shows how Cambridge residents attempt to articulate the personality of a changing British city.
NUCLEAR: Art and Radioactivity
Arts Catalyst and SCAN commissions
Nicholls & Clarke building, Shoreditch, London 14-16, 20-23, 27-30 Nov 2008
Chris Oakley, 'Half Life', 2008
The Arts Catalyst and SCAN are presenting the results of new commissions from the artists Simon Hollington & Kypros Kyprianou and Chris Oakley, exploring the re-emerging concerns of nuclear power in the exhibition NUCLEAR: Art and Radioactivity.
The exhibition and events explore the contradictions of nuclear power, as it has come to stand both for the failed utopian promises of modernism and a fresh hope for a carbon-free future.
Simon Hollington & Kypros Kyprianou's installation is the outcome from their residency at the British Atomic Nuclear Group, with an emphasis on the work the artists did as part of the wide-ranging public consultation process into siting a new nuclear power facility in the heart of London.
An examination of nuclear science research through a historical and cultural filter, Chris Oakley's film 'Half-Life' looks at the histories of Harwell, birthplace of the UK nuclear industry, and the development of fusion energy technology at the Culham facility in Oxfordshire.
Two events are included:
A 'Talkaoke' event will be hosted by The People Speak 14 November at the Nicholls & Clarke building. A mobile chat-show, the format allows all visitors to comment on the work and the issues around it in an informal and entertaining way.
In partnership with the RSA’s Art & Ecology programme, The Arts Catalyst presents a day-long forum at the RSA on 28 November exploring the impact of nuclear power in art, culture and society. Prominent artists, writers and experts will discuss their work and engagement with issues around nuclear energy, from Hiroshima through the 50s’ ‘white heat of technology’ and Cold War nuclear tensions to present day energy debates. Speakers include the controversial American ‘nuclear sculptor’ James Acord.
To register for the events, which are free, and for more information:
The Animal Gaze
Unit 2 Gallery and Metropolitan Works
18 November - 12 December 2008 then touring to the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World; and the Plymouth City Museum & Gallery, Plymouth Arts Centre, Plymouth College of Art & Design and the Roland Levinsky Gallery.
The Animal Gaze features works by over 40 artists about animals and humans. The curators have chosen works which explore current themes in academic studies about the animal and the human, ideas about taxonomy, representation, difference and indifference. They have not included works which could be considered wildlife portraiture, or those that use animals as decoration or status symbols.
Artists include Angela Bartram, Sarah Beddington,
Catherine Bell (AUS), Mircea Cantor (ROM), Marcus Coates
Nicky Coutts, Roswitha von der Driesch & Jens-Uwe Dyffort (GER), Tessa Farmer, Hayden Fowler (NZ), Jacob Cartwright & Nick Jordan, Jo Longhurst, Snaebjornsdottir/Wilson, Martin White.
Accompanying the exhibition is The Animal Gaze: Contemporary Art & Animal/Human Studies, a symposium to be held at Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media & Design, London Metropolitan University, on 20 - 21 November. Places are limited. See the website for availability.
Kielzog 6 June - 1 November 2008 Waterloopbos Forest, Netherlands
Could art change the climate?
With this question seventeen international artists were sent into the Waterloopbos, a forest in the Netherlands which has grown over the ruins of the former Hydrodynamic Laboratory.
In the outdoor laboratory, hydraulic engineers worked for several decades to find technical solutions for hydrodynamic problems all over the world. Kielzog asked artists to work amongst the ruins of the scale models of the laboratory, amongst overgrown sluices, harbours and river courses, on a new view of the Dutch battle against the water, and a creative view of climate change.
The forest is managed by the Nature Monument Association (Natuurmonumenten) and is accessible to the public.
Of All the People in All the World 13 September - 5 October 2008
A.E. Harris Factory, Birmingham
In this exhibition by Stans' Cafe, a grain of rice represents one person.
In the former metalworking factory in Birmingham are billions of grains of rice, 112 tonnes, 6.7 billions grains, representing each person on the planet. The landscape of rice mountains represents a different population, each with a story about the world's people, politics and current affairs.
The exhibiton has toured Los Angeles, Melbourne, Madrid and New York City, and is now returning home to Birmingham.
After Nature 17 July - 21 September 2008 New Museum, New York City
After Nature depicts a future landscape of wilderness and ruins. Part dystopian fantasy, part ethnographic museum of a lost civilization, the exhibition is an examination of humankind's relationship to nature.
Including over ninety works, it brings together an international and multigenerational group of contemporary artists, filmmakers, writers, and outsiders. The exhibition is organized by Massimiliano Gioni, Director of Special Exhibitions.